Category Archives: NTO (National Tourist Offices)

India Tourism unveils upcoming trade events

IV Rao - Deputy Director India Tourism Dubai

The tourism board of India, headed by I.R.V Rao, has revealed two important events planned to promote and strengthen ties between the UAE and India. The inaugural ITM or India Travel Mart will take place from February 1-4, 2017 in Pragati Maidan, New Delhi which is set to attract many visitors from different regions. It is a B2B travel trade event organised in conjunction with Confederation of Indian Industry and the Tourism Finance Corporation. Another event of importance is the Incredible India Tourism Investors Summit (IITIS) to be held from September 21-23, 2016, at Vigyan Bhavan, New Delhi. IITIS 2016 will create a platform for the global investors to explore investment opportunities available within the ambit of India’s tourism sector as well as the core infrastructure, understand policy framework and investment ecosystem of the country and be informed on incentives offered by government on investments,  explore and understand the nature of the wide array of investible projects from the States that will be showcased, catalyze partnerships through of B2B and B2G linkages, and identifying joint Venture opportunities with Indian Companies. The three-day Summit will include Thematic Sessions, Exhibition and Business-2-Business (B2B) and Business -2- Government (B2G) meetings. More information will be provided on India Travel Mart in due course.

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TCEB unveils new strategy for MICE


The Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau (TCEB) has unveiled a Digital MICE strategy and online marketing plan highlighting the ‘Biz Thailand’ mobile application — an information gateway for MICE travellers. TCEB’s four key online marketing initiatives in 2016 include the enhancement of the innovative Thai MICE website at by providing comprehensive information on MICE products and services, available in eight languages, and the ‘Biz Thailand’ mobile application to seamlessly leverage the TCEB website user experience catering to target audiences across the globe; online marketing tools and digital sales kits including a blog, digital brochure, photo and video content, as well as infographics and digital sales kits. Nopparat Maythaveekulchai, President, TCEB, said, “This year TCEB continues to promote the readiness of Thailand’s MICE industry through a comprehensive Digital MICE marketing strategy, utilising online channels to support the bureau’s key marketing activities while aligning both traditional and digital activities in the same strategic direction, consistent with the government’s Digital Economy policy – driving growth for the MICE industry, while serving as an effective economic growth driver.”

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‘Tourism Leadership Program’ by UAE and UNWTO

uae untwo-combined

The Ministry of Economy will hold its ‘Tourism Leadership Program’ from October 30 to November 3, 2016, in collaboration with the UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) and Themis Foundation. The programme falls under the framework of the Emirates Host initiative launched recently by the Ministry which aims to enhance the capabilities of the tourism sector and support the preparation of a strategic integrated five-year development plan. The plan will raise the efficiency of the UAE’s tourism workforce, improve service levels, and build local capacities. H.E. Eng. Sultan bin Saeed Al Mansouri, Minister of Economy, said: “The development of the tourism sector and the enhancement of its contributions to the national economy are among the main pillars supporting economic diversification and promoting policies for a post-oil economy.” The Minister also emphasized that the Ministry will continue to work on developing a national tourism strategy that covers plans, initiatives and programs at the federal and local levels over the next five years. The strategy will promote and market UAE as a Tourism destination by creating a unified destination identity and supporting and strengthening each emirate’s unique tourism potentials. For his part, H.E. Mohammed Khamis Al Muhairi, Undersecretary at the Ministry of Economy, added that the Ministry is coordinating with the UN World Tourism Organization and Themis Foundation, which is responsible for implementing training and education programs, to prepare an extensive tourism training plan during the coming period which will include many of the training programs and interactive workshops tailored for citizens working in the tourism sector. The Tourism Leadership Program is an intensive training course focused on strengthening the foundations of leadership and communication in tourism through theoretical and practical approaches.

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Ramada Ajman reinforces green initiatives

ramada 1

As part of its sustainability efforts, Ramada Hotel & Suites Ajman has underlined its commitment to ‘Soap for Hope’ and ‘Your Can for Tree’ campaigns. Pioneered by Sealed Air, the hotel has been a part of the ‘Soap for Hope’ project for more than two years. While giving out boxes of used soap for recycling, Ramada Hotel & Suites Ajman pledged to continue its participation not only to save the environment, but also to help less privileged communities supported by the project. The property also took part in the ‘Your Can for Tree’ initiative organised by Emirates Environmental Group (EEG), which aims to raise funds by collecting and selling used aluminium cans to fund tree-planting activities across the UAE.

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Ras Al Khaimah visitor numbers up by 7%


Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority (TDA) has revealed that total visitor arrivals to the country between January and July 2016 has increased by seven percent, compared to the same period in 2015, with further indicators foretelling another successful year for the region’s fastest growing tourism destination. For the month of July 2016, the hotel occupancy for Ras Al Khaimah’s hotels grew by 36.7 percent over July 2015 demonstrating increased demand for the emirate. According to Ras Al Khaimah TDA figures, in addition to the emirate receiving more visitors, the length of stay during the first seven mWonths of this year also increased. Total guest nights grew by 15.2 percent year-on-year, while the average length of stay in the Ras Al Khaimah’s hotels climbed 7.7 percent. Ras Al Khaimah’s expanding hotel proposition experienced significant increases during the same period with hotel occupancy averaging 70 percent, marking a 15 percent growth on last year. RevPAR grew by 7.6 percent over the same period, with room revenue increasing by 10.6 percent. The key hotel performance indicators continue to show growth well above the GCC average. Haitham Mattar, CEO, Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority said: “With access to 64 kilometres of pristine beaches, a unique terracotta desert and the highest mountain in the UAE located just 45 minutes from Dubai International Airport, Ras Al Khaimah’s hotels and resorts continue to grow from strength to strength. Our focus this year has been to heavily promote our new brand positioning which emphasises Ras Al Khaimah’s natural assets, luxurious indulgence, range of activities for different types of travellers, history and culture, and authentic Arabian heritage offering.” The domestic UAE market continues to represent Ras Al …

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July passenger traffic rises at AUH by 7.9%

Abu Dhabi

Abu Dhabi Airports marked an increase in passenger traffic by 7.9 per cent at Abu Dhabi International Airport (AUH) for July 2016 compared to the same month last year. The month recorded 2,267,572 passengers travelling through the airport, exceeding last July’s figure of 2,100,929. Total arrivals at the airport were up by 10.4 per cent at a figure of 1,074,022 in July, with departure numbers also increasing by 6.1 per cent at a total figure of 1,180,504. As for the local arrivals, specifically arrivals to Abu Dhabi excluding transfer and transit, July witnessed numbers rise by 15.9 per cent whilst local departures grew by 1.8 per cent. Arrival and departure transfers have both shown an increase of 8.0 per cent and 8.6 per cent respectively compared to July 2015. Eid and summer holidays were important factors in the increase in these figures. The top city destinations from Abu Dhabi were London, Bangkok, Doha, Bombay and Manila respectively, representing 16 per cent of the total traffic registered at the airport in July. Traffic to India has recorded a significant increase of 15.6 per cent in July, whilst traffic to the UK grew by 7.7 per cent. The traffic to Australia has risen by 28.1 per cent, while traffic to the USA has also gone up by 17.2 per cent. The US pre-clearance facility available at AUH has been a significant contributor to that growth.

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Ajman introduces new classification for desert camps and tourism villages


The Ajman Tourism Development Department (ATDD) has announced the launch of two classification programmes for desert camps and tourism villages, the first of its kind in the United Arab Emirates. Desert camps are divided into two types which are day use and overnight but will fall under one category while tourism villages will have different categories of 5-star, 4-star and 3-stars based on the facilities and services that they will offer to tourists and residents. According to Sara Alsuwaidi, Head of Classification Section at ATDD, the new classification criteria is in line with Ajman Vision 2021 to promote the emirate’s growing tourism industry. She said that the department’s working group visited a number of camps and tourism villages in Abu Dhabi and Ras Al Khaimah and compared them before they developed the new classification criteria program. The Licensing & Tourism Standard Department previously introduced classification motels, guest houses, and furnished apartments, in addition to the classification of hotels, hotel apartments, restaurants, travel & tourism agencies and tourist transportations.

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Latest offering in Dubai: the Floating Seahorse

Floating sea horse

A brand new holiday experience for international tourists and residents in the UAE will be the floating seahorses developed amidst water with a special underwater level as well.Inspired by Emirati culture and lifestyle and leading European designs, The Signature Edition of The Floating Seahorse has been developed especially for families with guests, groups and children of all ages.Kleindienst, the developer of The Floating Seahorse, has announced the launch of The Signature Edition, a new icon now in the making in the UAE. There will be 40 signature edition floating sea horses designed, engineered and built in the UAE. They are now under production and are currently priced at AED 12 million.  The estimated completion for the first phase is October 2016.

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Heart of Europe in Dubai


Dubai will be looking at promoting honeymooners to the destination with the latest project of heart shaped islands to be developed within the next four years. The Heart of Europe in Dubai is made up of six islands consisting European ; Germany, Sweden, Main Europe, St Petersburg, Switzerland and Monaco.The islands span six million square feet and will be able to accommodate up to 15,000 people at any one time. All six islands will be connected via bridges and will be accessible by boat, seaplane and helicopter.There will be no cars permitted on the islands to create the perfect island experience.Phase one of The Heart of Europe will be completed by the end of 2016 and the rest of the project in stages during 2017, 2018 and 2019. More details of this project to be available soon.

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Thailand MICE operating as normal


Following explosions in public areas in some Thai provinces during August 11-12, 2016, the Thailand Convention & Exhibition Bureau (TCEB) has issued a statement advising international stakeholders that Thailand’s MICE industry continues to operate as normal, and all public and private sector stakeholders are working together to monitor the situation. It said that all hotels, venues and attractions are open and ready to welcome business travellers. Transportation links, major roads and airports continue to operate, including Bangkok’s BTS Skytrain and MRT services and both Don Muang and Suvarnabhumi International Airports. However, business travellers are advised to prepare adequate travelling time to avoid getting caught in traffic due to large movements of people during this long-weekend holiday period. Meanwhile, Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has instructed local authorities to step up security at key locations throughout Thailand as preventive measure and to ensure safety and security for business travelers and local residents. Meanwhile planned events and business events activities continue in Thailand as the nation celebrated the birthday of Her Majesty Queen Sirikit and Mother’s Day on August 12, 2016.  

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